Math Resources,Uncategorized

2D and 3D Shape Activities

Let’s talk about shapes!

I LOVE when we learn about shapes! It is so much fun because it’s hands-on and students are better able to discuss shapes because they seem them every day!

Why? Shapes are hands-on, engaging and there is a ton of children literature and activities you can do with your students. They can build the shape with toothpicks or playdough, go on a shape hunt, play BINGO (who doesn’t like a game of BINGO), shape riddles, and sort shapes by attributes!

Here are some of the 2D and 3D shape activities I used in my classroom.

2D 3D Shapes Hands-on Activities

First, I create a “shape culture” classroom. I rename the tables (I call my students by table colors). I rename the table a shape and put that shape on their desk. They enjoy the change in table name (and will correct me if I accidentally say the color name and not their shape name).

Then, I put up shape posters! I don’t have a lot of wall space, so I hang my space posters under my smart board.

Now, let’s talk about books!

I always like to get my students excited about what we are doing in math by putting books in the library about the subject. So, I went through my personal library and the school library and found some books to put on display. Here are the books that I put in my classroom library.

2D and 3D Shape Books

I read The Shape of Things, Circus Shapes  and Not a Box.  These colorful books really got the students talking about shapes they see all around them!

Now, to the activities!

Activity #1: Using positional words to describe the location of 3D shapes

These activity cards are for using positional words to describe the location of 3D shapes. Students pick a card describe the location to their partner and the partner builds according to what their friend said. Students have a choice they can use the picture or flip the card over and read the words.

Using positional words to describe the location of 3D shapes

Positional Words using 3D shapes

Activity #2: Fill in the Hexagons

This activity is a classic shape game in the kinder world! Students spin the spinner and put that shape in a hexagon. The students have to fill up the hexagon, carefully and selectively placing the shapes in the right spot to make a hexagon.

Fill in the hexagon

Fill in the Hexagon

Activity #3 – Building Shapes using Playdough

This is a really fun hands-on fine motor shape activity. Using the playdough, students build the shape on the mat.

Building shapes using playdough

Building shapes using playdough

Activity #4 – 2D / 3D Shape Build Activity

Students build 2D and 3D shapes using playdough. This also teaches them how many sides and corners for each shape.

Building 2D 3D shapes using playdough and toothpicks

Building 2D 3D shapes using playdough and toothpicks

Activity #5 – Riddles

We also had fun creating our own shape riddles. Students drew a picture of their favorite shape and wrote clues to see if their classmates can guess.

Shape Riddles

Shape Riddles

Shape Riddles

Shape Riddles

 Activity #5 – Attribute Match-Up

Students sort the shapes by name, picture, attribute and real-life object

Shape Attribute Match-Up

Activity #6 – Shape Computer Game

This computer game will work on any device that uses PowerPoint 2010 or later. It has a vocabulary section and 2 games that students can play.

Shape Game using PowerPoint Presentation

Activity # 7 – Shape Geoboards

Geoboards are a great hands-on way to get students to make a example of a shape using a rubber band. Students pick a card and replicate that card by building it using a rubber band on a geoboard.

2D shapes and geoboards

Activity #8 – 2D 3D Shape Booklets

I also like to have students write a shape book about shapes that they can read and share with the parents at home.

2D 3D Shape Booklets

Shape Booklet

Activity #9 – Shape Picture

After reading and discussing shapes all around us, I have students using attribute blocks to build a real-life object using shapes. We then go on a gallery walk and look at everyone’s beautiful work. We then draw a picture and label the shapes we see. I then take all of their pictures and make a shape book that is put in the class library.


Shape Picture

Shape Book

Activity #10 – Attribute Match Up

2D Shape Attribute Match-UpThis was my students’ FAVORITE shape center! I typed the attributes of the shapes we were studying and glued and laminated them on a giant chart paper. Students had to read the clues and place the shape that match the attribute.

2D Shape Attribute Match-Up

Activity #11 – Does it Roll, Stack or Slide?

You can also play Does it Roll, Stack and Slide? Students test each shape to see if it can roll, stack or slide and record their findings on a recording sheet.

Does it Roll, Stack or Slide Worksheet

Activity #12 – Shape Puzzles

Students put the puzzle together! They match the word, shape and a object that looks like that shape. This activity is great for math centers!

Shape Puzzle

Shape Puzzles

I write the answers on the back of the puzzle so students can self-check!

There are more activities! Such as going on a shape hunt for 2D and 3D shapes!

Thank you so much for reading this post! I hope I was able to give you some ideas on fun activities to get your students talking about shapes!

If you need more ideas, please check out my 2D/3D Shape packet!

Happy teaching,





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